The Daytona Beach Police Department (DBPD) arrests a 20-year-old college student after members of DBPD’s Advanced Technology & Cybercrimes Unit (ATAC) confirm that he had child pornography in his possession.
Mathew T. Brockelbank – a student at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) – was placed into custody at 4:11 p.m. today (February 24, 2022) once patrol officers found him inside a classroom on ERAU’s Daytona campus.
ATAC detectives began their investigation in October 2021 after receiving a tip from the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) that someone had put child pornography onto the Internet using Internet Protocol (IP) addresses assigned to ERAU.
A subpoena served to ERAU led to detectives discovering that those child porn files were uploaded through the network username ERAU had assigned to Brockelbank when he registered as a student there.
As DBPD’s ATAC Unit worked that tip, a second tip from NCMEC arrived last December. That tip uncovered another child porn file which was uploaded through ERAU’s network via Brockelbank’s username.
Detectives believe Brockelbank used various mobile messaging applications and email accounts to upload those files, which shows young children of various ages engaged in multiple sex acts.
The ATAC Unit uncovered enough at that point to have a search warrant signed by a Volusia County judge, allowing them to enter Brockelbank’s dorm room at 221 Aerospace Boulevard yesterday (February 23, 2022) and seize various electronic devices belonging to Brockelbank.
A forensic analysis of one of the seized devices – Brockelbank’s cell phone – turned up 77 child porn files, including photos and videos. Those files are the basis for the 28 felony charges of possession of sexual performance by a child now filed against Brockelbank.
Brockelbank is in the process of being booked on those charges at Volusia County Jail after his arrest warrant was signed by a Volusia County Judge. His initial bond is set at $420,000, or $15,000 per felony count.
Additional charges may be filed by the ATAC Unit in the future as they continue to forensically search through those seized devices.